Aspirin Use May Increase Prostate Cancer Risk

BANFF, Alberta—Use of aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is associated with an increased likelihood of having prostate cancer (PCa) found on prostate biopsy, according to data presented at the Canadian Urological Association annual meeting.

Bimal Bhindi, MD, and colleagues at the University of Toronto studied 931 men undergoing prostate biopsy. Patients taking aspirin and other NSAIDs had a significantly higher rate of biopsy-detected PCa than those taking no NSAIDs (65% vs. 42%). After adjusting for multiple variables, use of aspirin and other NSAIDs was associated with a significant twofold and threefold higher odds of PCa detection, respectively, compared with no NSAID use. Additionally, use of aspirin, but not other NSAIDs, was associated with a significant 64% increased odds of having high-grade PCa detected compared with no NSAID use.

These findings contrast with those of most epidemiologic studies in the published literature, the researchers noted.

The investigators pointed out, however, that aspirin and other NSAIDs still may have chemopreventive effects because patients whose cancers were prevented might not have been referred for biopsy.

At the European Association of Urology 27th Annual Congress in Paris earlier this year, Finnish researchers reported on a study showing that NSAID use is associated with a 31% increased risk of PCa overall and a 63% increased risk of advanced PCa, after adjusting for potential confounders.

However, a study published in the June issue of the British Journal of Cancer (2012;107:207-214) found that daily aspirin use was associated with lower PCa risk. The effect of taking at least one aspirin daily was more pronounced when analyses were restricting men older than 65 years or men with a history of cardiovascular-related diseases or arthritis, according to the investigators.

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